“Aging population is a major challenge for internists”

I wouldn’t lie to you if I told you that it was a difficult few months. I began this journey in February 2022, immersed in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, which forced virtual meetings and the suspension of courses and other usual SMICV activities for the previous two years. Thanks to the good work of the previous president, Dr. Enrique Rodilla, it was possible to move forward in a more than efficient way. This magnificent work made it very easy for us transition to the current board of directors which I have the honor to preside over.

With the rough start behind us, we restarted all the usual Society machinery with a main goal: return to general face-to-face presence for the SMICV regional convention, which begins on September 23.

What are the challenges facing internal medicine today?

Internal medicine is a hospital specialty and an interdisciplinary field that is essential to the proper functioning of any hospital. The As internists, we are specialists in the management of hospitalized patients, regardless of the reason for admissionas well as in the follow-up of the same and patients who do not need hospitalization, in outpatient consultations.

If the pandemic has had any good which, thankfully, we come out of is this has given more value, if possible, to our specialty. This should help us continue to grow as a group and should be a wake-up call to our health authorities to know how to weigh up what is the true value of internal medicine in allocating new contracts and resources. And that events like the termination of many of the COVID contracts that were covered by internists who didn’t have structural vacancies are not happening again.

Our reason for existing is the internists who are part of our society. We also owe them it is our duty to protect your professional and employment interests, as well as improving health care and advancing the treatment, study and prevention of disease in the Valencian Community. Must promotes all scientific endeavors and serves as a vehicle for their dissemination and we must also advise public authorities on health and public health matters.

What long-term goals does the Annual Congress of the Valencian Community Society of Internal Medicine have?

The SMICV Congress, which this year reaches its XXV edition, should serve as a platform for dissemination of new treatments for the most common diseases, as well as their management from a more global perspective. We must not forget the training of the youngest internists, who for the most part attend this important event for us. This year we have introduced a workshop to improve clinical ultrasound skills and we have too competition of clinical cases and presentations addressed to our residents.

What is the significance of this congress in the world of medicine?

Our annual meeting is behind the national congress of the Spanish Society of Internal Medicineand together with other regional companies, the most important act in the field of internal medicine.

The Congress we are celebrating these days had organization of Vinalopo Hospital in Elche and at the head of said committee is Dr. David Vicente, a young and promising internist whom I would like to congratulate here on his work and congratulate him on his success.

What have been the biggest advances in internal medicine since the first edition?

A lot has happened since then. It was around 1997 when I was graduating from medical school and I still didn’t know what specialty I would be teaching. Shortly after that I decided to dedicate five years to becoming an internist and to this day I can say it was one of the best decisions I ever made. Along the way, I had great teachers, “old school” internists who, with far less resources than us, were able to diagnose and treat patients flawlessly. Let me have a memory right now of a An exemplary internist who developed his entire career at the General University Hospital in Elche, my hospital, and who until his death a few years ago was chief of internal medicine. I mean Dr. Angel Sanchez Sevillanohe trained all those generations of inhabitants then and From him we learned that the most important thing in our specialty is the patients.. Through and for them we are and owe to them. Thank you Angel, wherever you are, we thank you for all you have taught us. Your legacy is still very much alive in your beloved Hospital General Universitario de Elche.

Obviously, things have changed a lot in the last quarter of a century, diagnostic techniques, treatments, gene and enzyme therapies, early detection of diseases through screening, access and dissemination of information, etc. All this allowed a significant improvement in health care and on quality of life of patients and even, increasing global life expectancy.

Population aging is another major challenge we face longevity brings new diseases that need to be treated for a longer timeadapting to each population group a more personalized medicine according to the needs of each one.

But there is still a long way to go we must not stop learning and exploring to achieve even more ambitious goals, always in favor of the health of the population. My commitment and that of SMICV are firm in this regard.

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